There's a Korean proverb that means to take extra caution before acting.
"Tap even a stone bridge before crossing", perhaps describes the tone of South Korea's recent statement on Russia announcing the world's first COVID-19 vaccine.
Health authorities say evidence of the safety of Russia's vaccine is limited and insufficient for it to be used in South Korea.
"We can only make a judgement on introducing domestic usage of the Russian vaccination once we receive basic data on its stability."
However, health authorities addedthe Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety will together further discuss the possible usage of Russia's COVID-19 vaccine.
Meanwhile, over in the United States, top U.S. infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci said in an interview Tuesday, when he appeared on the National Geographic program 'Stopping Pandemics', that he too doubts its safety and effectiveness.
" So, I hope, but I haven't heard any evidence to make me feel that's the case, I hope that the Russians have actually definitively proven that the vaccine is safe and effective. I seriously doubt that they've done that."
Fauci also emphasized that the U.S. has more than six vaccine candidates, and could make even more by next week if they were to disregard the risks of possibly putting people in dangerfurther implying that Moscow hasn't properly tested its vaccine 'Sputnik-5'.
The vaccine is yet to complete its final trials, but the large Russian investment company, 'Sistema', is expecting to put the vaccine into mass production by the end of the year. But, question marks remain over its regulatory process.
Choi Won-jong, Arirang News.